Rights group: Gambia must end brutal crackdown on rights

Gambian activists and politicians have called on West Africa's economic body to take action against Gambia for its brutal crackdown on freedom of expression and the right to peaceful assembly in the run-up to an election this year.

The calls come as Amnesty International released a report Thursday that outlined violence against those opposing the government. The group says 51 people, including opposition members, await trial and at least 36 others have been detained without charge. It said one opposition leader died in custody.

It said Gambia must comply with the Economic Community Of West African States' protocol on democracy and good governance, and called for its suspension from the body if no progress on human rights is made.

The regional body is holding a summit beginning Saturday.